A chilly Northeast breeze blowing down Green Pond, was the perfect setting for the final 2006 SANJL regatta. Four races were sailed under a threatening sky. Crowded starts made freedom to escape on port up the lake a necessity. But the real separation in the fleet occurred at the windward mark. The mark was placed under the influence of the cliffs. This made picking the correct approach difficult and critical. Many places were lost or gained in the last 1/4 of the first leg. But the departure from the mark was even more important. Beat your competitors to the next puff and you sailed out from under the cliffs with a lead that could not be not overcome. Miss the breeze and resign yourself to being one shift and puff behind for the rest of the race. All in all it was fantastic lake sailing. The kind of stuff that SANJL sailors thrive on.
The regatta standings were never in question as Derek Jackson thrives in a breeze. Great speed and solid tactics netted him 3 firsts and a second. Not far behind him was Megan Keating. She too was fast in the heavier air. Steve Manson was third. Don Sensenig (An old SANJL friend), returned to racing by finishing forth. Bill Betts rounded out the top five.
The over-all series was won easily by Derek Jackson. Derek has been turning up the intensity on the national Sunfish circuit. Top finishes in the midwinter's and Pan Am Trails are a clear message that he will be tough at SANJL events for years to come. But more importantly, he is a well respected competitor and a terrific ambassador for SANJL.
Another very popular win was Mike Wheeler's taking of the Challenger division crown. He is product of the HSC sailing program. Mike has worked hard to improve his racing. In addition to SANJL, He travels to many regattas throughout the year. He is also a regular at the highly competitive Wednesday night series at HSC. Congratulations to Mike.
Green Pond hosted a another great event. Sailors were treated to typical GPYC hospitality as well a solid race committee work. Thank you to all who volunteered their time and energy.
Will Landau of Mountain Lakes is the 2006 SANJL Junior Champion. This is his second consecutive SANJL Junior Championship. Will's victory was the result of consistent sailing highlighted by several "come from behind" wins at critical moments. Will proved his cool under pressure. He missed an entire regatta leaving him with "no throw-outs to burn". Unfazed, he sailed strong in every race to take the title.
The final day of racing was held on Green Pond. Sailors saw a variety of conditions and wind strengths. Caleb Zimmerman of HSC was the star of the day with an impressive showing of 3 firsts and a second. He was clearly the fastest sailor on the course. Will Landau was second. Sailing clean, he clinched the over-all championship. Nathan Altomare (3rd) and Will Kresic (4th) rounded out the top four. In the Midget division, Shannon Buruchian dominated. At times she gave even the older Junior sailors fits as her speed constantly put her in the mix at the top of the fleet. Alec Manson was second. His performance was highlighted by a spectacular capsize at the jibe mark. His back flip off the windward rail earned him the coveted trophy for "best inversion". John Wisniewski lost the tie breaker to Alec and was awarded 3rd Midget. Matt Grossmann rounded out the top 4 with a strong show of determination.
Day two at Highland Lakes saw very shifty winds challenge the fleet. Will Landau of Mountain Lakes never gave up and came from a long way back in several races to win the day. The young women were very close behind. Luci Bertocci of HSC and Shannon Buruchian (top midget) of the host lake were 2nd and 3rd respectively.
Day one at Packanack saw twelve young sailors from the area gathered to compete. Teddy Wells of HSC dominated the regatta with three first place finishes. The top midget sailor was John Wisniewski of Highland Lake just one point ahead of Shannon Buruchian also of Highland Lake. The wind was steady and provided the racers with good windward legs to test their skills.
2006 Junior Championships Final Standings